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1950s Mr. Blackwell Black Wool Dress



Stunning 1950’s Mr. Blackwell Design can be worn as a formal evening dress or cocktail dress. Black wool with crepe lining under bodice and skirt underlined with interfacing for structure. Tulle petticoat. Features: scoop back, drop waist, Venetian black silk lace and a beautiful silk bow accentuating the back. The back zipper is covered by a tiny silk bow beneath the dipped back line. The stunning lace pattern on this little black dress is delicate and intricate. The extreme princess lines create a beautiful and flattering silhouette. Modern Us Size 2-4. *All garments and accessories have been professionally cleaned and thoroughly checked before shipping. They are ready to enjoy upon arrival! Born Richard Sylvan Selzer to a poor second generation Jewish Russian Family in Brooklyn, Richard Blackwell had a very difficult childhood. He saw a way out of poverty and abuse in 1936, after he was cast as Tommy, in the 1936 production of Sidney Kingsley’s “Dead End.” Blackwell moved to the West Coast and studied acting alongside Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney, and began working as a messenger at Warner Bros. studio in Burbank, California. Blackwell was signed to RKO Pictures by Howard Hughes, changing his name from “Richard Selzer” to the more widely marketable “Richard Blackwell”. In 1958, after discovering his talent for design while making commissioned costumes for the stage, Blackwell turned to fashion. Upon the launch of his clothing line, Richard Blackwell adopted the Mr. Blackwell name, which corresponded to the luxurious tone set by his “House of Blackwell” label. Blackwell specialized in elegant, formfitting dresses in stylish prints and luxurious fabrics, which often sold for between $800 and $1,000. Blackwell was the first designer to offer a line available to plus-sized women, and was also the first designer to present his work on a television broadcast. Blackwell also claimed he was the first designer to offer designer jeans for women. Shortly after producing his label, Blackwell’s success skyrocketed, and he quickly became known for his beautiful designs and discerning eye. Blackwell had become an authority on taste, and in 1960 was asked to write an article for the American Weekly Magazine detailing the "10 Best and Worst Dressed" people. Blackwell’s quick wit, sharp tongue, and acerbic comments, found a permanent, loving home in fashion journalism, and Blackwell established himself as America’s number 1, and most beloved fashion critic, establishing the first ever annual “Worst-Dressed List.” The list ran from 1960s up until Blackwell’s death in 2008.


  • Designer
  • Dimensions
    Length: 44 in. (111.76 cm)
  • Period
  • Condition
    Wear consistent with age and use.
  • Seller Location
    Houston, TX
  • Reference Number
    1stDibs: LU1032352852

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping
    $70 Standard Shipping
    to anywhere in the world, arrives in 9-11 days.
    We recommend this shipping type based on item size, type and fragility.
    Ships From: Houston, TX
  • Return Policy

    A return for this item may be initiated within 1 day of delivery.

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About the Seller
5 / 5
Located in Houston, TX
Gold Seller
These expertly vetted sellers are highly rated and consistently exceed customer expectations.
Established in 2013
1stDibs seller since 2014
681 sales on 1stDibs
Typical response time: 2 hours
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